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What Could Be

S. Qiouyi Lu is a writer, artist, narrator, and translator whose work has appeared in Clarkesworld, Liminality, and GlitterShip. In their spare time, S. enjoys destroying speculative fiction as a dread member of the queer Asian SFFH illuminati. You can visit their site at s.qiouyi.lu or follow them on Twitter as @sqiouyilu.

My mother was from the sea, raised by the Pacific Ocean that laps at both China and the United States. When she rose salt-crusted from that amniotic love, she found that she could never stay long on either shore, that she needed to be traveling between them.
She was more jellyfish than person: her presence tentacled through my life, yet at the same time she was translucent, transparent--there one moment, gone the next. She was a yearning, a wish for a barnacled presence rather than the slipstream glimpses I caught.
In death, she became a dream, something unreal that couldn't exist on land the way I did. She slipped away from me, until all I had were her ashes scattering away from my hands into the Pacific.
My mother was from the sea, and to the sea she returned, leaving me standing alone on one shore.
The End
This story was first published on Thursday, August 24th, 2017
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